Letter from Ed Schafer, Governor of North Dakota
Read at the Bunderstreffen, 22 June 1996, Stuttgart, Germany
June 1, 1996
I want to extend warm greetings from the people of North Dakota to the Germans from Russia community in Germany, in Ukraine, and throughout the former Soviet Union.
The heritage of North Dakota includes the many wonderful contributions of the Germans from Russia who settled the Dakota prairies beginning in the 1870s. The sons and daughters of these German-Russian immigrants have made important contributions to North Dakota's past, present and future.
North Dakota's rich agricultural history can be attributed to the early German-Russian homesteaders who broke the soil and planted their crops.
In June, Germans from Russia who live in North Dakota and throughout America join the historic tours, Journey to the Homeland: Germany and Ukraine, sponsored by the North Dakota State University Libraries. They will visit the ancestral villages of their forefathers. The Americans will walk the streets where their parents and grandparents once lived in the Black Sea and Bessarabian German villages.
On behalf of the State of North Dakota and the North Dakota State University Libraries, I am pleased to present the official flag in honor of our pioneer heritage. May future generations of Germans from Russia continue to have the achievements of our ancestors, who have created a better future in North Dakota and North America.
Edward T. Schafer